J.Y. Lee’s Samsung Stake Doubles After Inheritance Distribution

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Samsung heir Jay Y. Lee’s stakes in three key group affiliates, including Samsung Electronics Co., will rise significantly following the death of his father, strengthening his control over South Korea’s largest corporation.

Lee’s stake in the tech giant increased to 1.63% from 0.7% previously, according to a filing on Friday. Separate filings on Friday also revealed that Lee will inherit half of his father Lee Kun-hee’s stake in Samsung Life Insurance Co., which raises his stake to 10.44% from 0.06%, strengthening his grip over Samsung Electronics. The younger Lee will receive about 1.2 million shares of Samsung C&T Corp., boosting his stake in Samsung C&T to 18.1% excluding preferred stock.

The succession drama at Samsung has roiled South Korea for years, with allegations of bribery and corruption leading to the jailing of Jay Y. Lee and the resignation of the country’s president. Lee is now on trial in a second case in which prosecutors allege Samsung engineered the merger of two subsidiaries in 2015 to smooth his path to control.

Lee is the largest shareholder of Samsung C&T, which is a de-facto holding company of the group. Samsung C&T holds 19.3% in Samsung Life, which has an 8.5% stake in Samsung Electronics excluding preferred shares, and C&T directly holds more than 5% in the crown jewel of the group.

The announcements come after months of speculation over how stakes in Samsung held by the late chairman, formerly South Korea’s richest person, would be distributed among his heirs. His family this week outlined a long-awaited plan to pay one of the largest inheritance-tax bills in history at more than 12 trillion won ($11 billion), as well as their intention to donate 1 trillion won for medical facilities and approximately 23,000 pieces of art.

Jay. Y. Lee also gets 2,158 shares of Samsung SDS Co., according to a separate filing Friday.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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